We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Cookie Recipe #129 - Ladies' Kisses

You have to pop the whole thing in your mouth at once to get the crunchy almond and chocolate combination experience. These dainty cookies look fancy but are fairly simple to make.

Ingredients: 10 tablespoons butter, softened, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg yolk, 1 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, 1 cup ground almonds, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup chocolate chips.

Instructions: Cream the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolk, almond extract, ground almonds, and flour until evenly mixed. Cover with plastic and chill for about 2 hours until firm.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; line baking sheets with parchment paper. Break off small pieces of dough and roll into balls with your hands. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until golden. Allow cookies to cool on parchment paper that has been removed from baking sheet to heat-proof surface. Cool completely.

Melt the chocolate chips in microwave for one minute (more if needed) and stir until smooth and thoroughly melted. Place small amount of chocolate on bottom of one cookie then top with another cookie, squeezing gently. Place on cooling racks to set and harden(or place in refrigerator for a few minutes to harden).

Makes about 2 dozen sandwiches.

"The Cookie and Biscuit Bible", Catherine Atkinson, Hermes House, Anness Publishing Ltd, Blackfriars Road, London, 2010.

Cookies Rule!!!

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